The prices of water heaters vary widely, according to their type, features and energy-inefficient. Typically, the more expensive water heaters are also the ones providing higher energy savings.
Water Heaters Prices
Budget water heaters: some few hundred dollars;
Modern condensing gas water heaters:$1,000 to $8,000;
Heat pumps water heaters: $2,000 to $8,000;
Thermosyphon solar water heaters (warm and mild climates): $2,000-$3,000 or more;
Solar water heaters for cold climates: $4,000-$5,000 or more…
Gas water heaters: Prices and Savings
Prices of condensing water heaters: $1.000-$3,000 (low-range) to $4,000-$8,000 (top stainless).
Prices of standard gas water heaters: $400-$500.
Savings: a difference of 30% in the Energy Factor (EF) of gas water heaters amount to about $100 in energy savings per household/year (in USA, according to data from ACEE).
Bottom line: expensive condensing water heaters, with an EF of 90%+, only become economically advantageous for large water heating loads.
Solar water heaters
Prices of thermosyphon solar water heating systems (mild and hot climates): $2.000-$3.000;
Prices of drainback and other solar water heaters for cold climates: $4.000-$5.000+.
Solar water heaters can provide energy savings of 80% in sunny climates. That makes the recovery of the investment relatively easy in such climates, all the more than the type of solar heaters for these climates are the least expensive.
Electric water heaters
Traditional stand-alone electric water heaters are inexpensive, but their running costs can be high (often twice those of gas water heaters, depending on electricity rates).
New electric water heat pumps provide hot water at competitive prices, but the cost of the best units is on the $4,000-$5,000+ range.
Below we list a fe selected brands and models, for each type of water heater; they are among the most highly rated units in each category…
Tank-Style Gas Water Heaters Prices
Rheem, A. O. Smith and Bradford White are the main manufacturers of tank-style gas units (American market). GE models are made by Rheem, while the units sold by American, Maytag, Kenmore and Whirlpool are made by A. O. Smith.
Regular gas heaters
Rheem 22V40F1 (40 Gallons) or Rheem 22V50F1 (50 Gallons), 62% energy efficiency, are well rated models. Online prices (Amazon.com): $400-$500. For customers reviews on Amazon: Rheem Gas Water Heaters
High efficient (condensed) gas heaters
A. O. Smith Vertex series (GHHE), 50 gallons: prices between $1.500 and $2.000 (96% energy efficiency).
Rheem and A. O. Smith have good tankless gas heaters, but Vaillant (in Europe), Bosch (with their Vulcano and Junkers brands) and Rinnai, Noritz, Navien are the global leaders in tankless gas water heaters.
High efficient (condensed) gas water heaters
Rheem: Rheem RTGH-95DVN Prestige Indoor Direct Vent Condensing Tankless Water Heater, Natural Gas, 94% energy efficiency: $1.190 (Online ratings and reviews, Amazon: Rheem Prestige Indoor Series.)
Rinnai: Rinnai RC98eN Natural Gas Condensing Tankless Water Heater, 9.8 Gallons Per Minute, 95% thermal efficiency: $1.350 (Amazon).
Navien:Navien NR-240A Condensing Tankless Water Heater with Pump and Buffer Tank, Natural Gas; 95% Energy Factor; $1.800 (Amazon).
Regular (On-Demand) gas water heaters:
Rinnai R75LSi Natural Gas Indoor Tankless Water Heater, 7.5 GPM: $775 (Amazon), Energy Factor: 75%
Rinnai R94LSi Natural Gas Indoor Tankless Water Heater, 9.4 GPM: $1025 (Amazon), Energy Factor: 82%
See, for customer reviews and ratings in Amazon: Rinnai Regular Water Heaters
Prices of Elecric Water Heaters
Point of use water heaters
Bosch-Ariston series has the highest ratings in technical and customer reviews. They are sold around $160-$200, in Amazon.com.
Other top rated point of use electric water heaters:
Rheem: Rheem RTE 13 Electric Tankless Water Heater, 4 GPM: Est. $200 in Amazon.
Reliance: Reliance 6 6 SOMS K 6 Gallon Compact Electric Water Heater: Est. $180 Amazon.
Ecosmart tankless (3 GPM): Ecosmart ECO 27 27 KW at 240-Volt Electric Tankless Water Heater: $469 in Amazon.
See, for customer reviews on point-of-use electric water heaters, in Amazon.com: Electric Point of Use Ratings and Customer Reviews.
Electric Heat Pumps
Rheem Ecosense, GE Geospring and A. O. Smith Voltex series are best-sellers in this category, but there are many reported failures. Prices in Amazon.com:
GE Geospring Hybrid (H50DNSRSA): $1,500
Rheem Ecosense 50 HP50ES: $1,500
A. O. Smith Voltex PHPT-80: $2.250
Budget Electric Water heaters
Kenmore 32656, tank style, 55 gallons: $290, sold at Sears; this budget model has very mixed ratings.